Past Winners » Early Doors


(Message of 7th March 2019)

Early Doors is an interesting contender for the Martin Pipe Hurdle.  He is a young progressive individual, a second-season hurdler, who has course form, who has a high rating, and who is trained by a top trainer.

The Joseph O’Brien-trained gelding finished third in the race last year as a novice.  He came from midfield in a race in which they didn’t go a great gallop and in which the winner, Blow By Blow, made all.  Early Doors travelled really well into the home straight, he looked a big danger, but his run flattened out on the run-in. 

JP McManus’ horse is a year older now, a year stronger, a six-year-old, and he is only 3lb higher in the handicap on a mark of 145.  His two runs this season have been in Grade 1 company.  He finished fifth in the Hatton’s Grace Hurdle on his seasonal return, and he followed up by staying on well to take second place from Bapaume behind Apple’s Jade in the Christmas Hurdle at Leopardstown over three miles. 

That was his first run over three miles, and he kept on well, which augurs well for the Martin Pipe, a race in which they usually go fast and in which the stamina horses usually come to the fore.  He has raced just eight times over hurdles, and he could be primed for a big run at Cheltenham.  He is available at 20/1 all-in, but best to back him at 16/1 with a run.